Call to transfer elephant Mali to Thailand snowballs

mali-the-elephant

TWO more lawmakers have supported the proposal of several sectors to transfer Mali, the elephant currently housed at the Manila Zoo, to Boon Lott’s Elephant Sanctuary (BLES) in Thailand.

Gabriela Party-List Reps. Luzviminda Ilagan and Emmi de Jesus, authors of House Resolution 2937, urged the City of Manila, the Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) and the Protected Area and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) to facilitate the immediate transfer of Mali to Thailand.

“Mali’s confinement in a concrete enclosure with very limited space restricts its movement, thus chronic pressure sores develop, and its foot infections and arthritis continue to worsen, as concrete surfaces do not allow a variety of surfaces for her to roam around in, causing infections which lead to death among elephants,” Ilagan said

De Jesus said the solitary confinement does not offer social conditions ideal for a female elephant.

Citing the opinion of veterinarians and elephant experts, De Jesus said the removal of companions and the lack of emotional support have placed Mali under chronically high level of stress which lowered her reproductive function and immunity and increased her muscle breakdown.

“All of these severely compromise the psychological and physical conditions of the elephant,” De Jesus said.

The sanctuary in Thailand, the Boon Lott’s Elephant Sanctuary (BLES), which specializes in rehabilitating Asian elephants, has offered to care for Mali.

Earlier, Reps. Carlos Padilla (Lone District, Nueva Vizcaya), Rufus Rodriguez (2nd District, Cagayan De Oro City) and Maximo Rodriguez (Party-list, Abante Mindanao), also urged the government agencies to facilitate the immediate transfer of Mali to Thailand.

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